After a man threw a backpack onto a CTA bus Tuesday afternoon in the North Side, a panic broke out and the bus was evacuated.
The “suspicious package” was thrown onto the 82 Kimball bus around 4:30 p.m. near Elston and Kimball in Chicago’s Irving Park neighborhood, Chicago fire and CTA officials told NBC. The incident led Chicago police to investigate the “unattended backpack,” shutting down Elston from Waveland Avenue to Grace Street.
Passengers recall the bus being stopped at a red light when a man, who appeared to be getting on the bus, yelled something to the driver and threw his bag through the opened doors of the bus, according to WGN. Once passenger processed what the man had done, there was a scramble to evacuate the bus for fear that a bomb was in the bag.
“Everybody was screaming,” Derrick Thomas, who was aboard the bus, told WGN. “He threw [the bag] on there, so instinctively, you think that’s what it is.”
— WGN-TV Traffic (@WGNtraffic) August 22, 2017
After taking all precautions necessary, police were able to identify the bag as a gym bag with water in it, being no danger to the public. The man who threw it on the bus got into a white sedan driven by a female and left the scene. Police are still investigating the incident.